Is cow-protection just sociopolitical rhetoric in India? Bharatiya Janata Party MP Sakshi Maharaj said recently, "If someone insults our mother, we would rather die than tolerate it… for us, it is Bharat mata, our biological mother and gau mata."

How, them, to explain the kilogrammes of plastic India's cows consume? Plastic that can kill.

Rumenotomies like the one in the video above have to be performed on cows to get the plastic out, which builds up over many years to become a solid rock like structure. This clip is from a documentary film titled The Plastic Cow, made for a campaign by the same name, working towards saving cows from consuming plastic.

Illegal dairies are allowed to operate where the milkmen just leave their cows loose to roam the streets and eat their fill from the open garbage dumps. Chemicals from plastic bags seep into the milk as well, according to this 2014 report in India Today.

Dairies in general keep the cows in unhygienic conditions and the cows are often injected with chemicals to increase their milk production. A procedure that hits their reproductive systems eventually making them sterile.

All these cruelties against cows are allowed but the maternal analogies come bursting only in cases such as the one in Dadri, where even the lynching of a man to death is explained with these platitudes.